Harvest In The City






 

Since a few years ago, there has been a quiet boom of ‘rooftop gardening’ in the cities of many countries. Many people believed that you could not even imagine having your own garden in a modern city where high rise buildings and apartments are fully packed. However, some started to break that fixed concept. We forgot about the fact that the unused space of a building’s ‘rooftop’ is like an oasis in urban area because it fully and thoroughly receives the sunlight and air.

I also had the fixed concept that I could only do farming on soil in the ground. One of my friends helped me break this notion. She is an ordinary lady in her twenties who works for a web design company and lives alone with two kittens. One day, she started to put pots one by one on the rooftop of her little villa and grew some vegetables. That rooftop was either a space for everyone living in the villa or a space no one cared to go. She said that no one actually noticed that she expanded her farming on the rooftop.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

In the beginning, she planted various seeds out of curiosity. Because of her lack of knowledge about farming, plants were dying out and did not bear fruit. That’s when she started to study about farming in her spare time. She germinated seeds to make seedlings. She then planted and grew them. She started to do everything by herself in her spare time, before and after work.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

Sprouts began to come out to the world in this way and grew rapidly and started to cover the entire rooftop with greens. Life began to fill up this abandoned space.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

Before two years had passed, she became a pretty skilled farmer. She posted a rooftop gardening diary on her blog every day. It was fun to follow this whole process of something growing.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

Sprouts grow to trees, bloom, bear fruit, and become ripe. This process was displaying nature’s flow every day. A happy sight to see is her hand filled with harvested fruits.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

She even successfully grew vegetables that seem difficult to handle. I was honestly shocked to see her harvest them. It was a shock because of my fixed concept that farming would be possible only with a wide field. I was shocked again when my friend said that humans aren’t involved much in this farming process. She continued that the sunlight, wind and water did all and she did not do anything. Besides, it was surprising to see how some space that people didn’t see became ‘a place of life.’ It became a playground for cats, and frogs stopped by. It became a forest in an urban city center where everything coexists.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

She planted some flowers in spare pots. A variety of flowers bloomed colorfully making the forest more diverse. The title of my friend’s diary entry is ‘It’s extravagant, flower festival,’ and she posted some pictures of her flowers.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

Vegetables she harvested from the rooftop garden were transformed to pickles to give as presents to her friends. She picked some leaves for salads while Crown Daisies transformed to marvelous interior decorations.

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

 

Furthermore, she amazingly incorporates farming into her daily life routine. This process has become a natural everyday life to her. Most importantly, there has been an enormous change to her diet. She used to eat out all the time. But now, she prepares a simple table with organic vegetables and fruits. She learned about the joy of ‘table setting’ and ‘meal’.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

She gets to harvest more than she adequately consumes so she even ‘shares’ them with people around her, including strangers.

 

Harvest In The City - Wisdom's Webzine

 

 

“Take these basil plants”

All of these basil plants disappeared quietly over half a day.

Let’s go up to a rooftop, the place closest to the sky in an urban area. It is our responsibility to begin a process of filling up life in the empty space. Since we, humans, begin this process, the sunlight, water, wind, and energy of the universe grow life. Then, it is again ours to enjoy joy the harvesting of the produce. There is a joy of harvest for those who make actions to do it. Do not complain about a dreary everyday life in the city. Rather, let’s construct our own farm.

* Lastly, there are some little tips for rooftop gardening. If you want to cover soil over the entire rooftop to make a garden, it is very important to check whether the rooftop is waterproof. It is not bad to use pots, like my friend does, if you are a beginner. And in order to grow vegetables well, soil must be of good quality. Soil must drain well and be abundant in organic matters. Appropriate depths of soil are 25~30 cm for vegetables, 30~50 cm for herbaceous plants, and 70~100 cm for seedlings like fruits.